Oct 12, 2022

Brazil Gateway hosts virtual event with Brazilian non-profit

On September 21, the Brazil Gateway virtually hosted “Amazon Journey: Creating an Arc of Regeneration at Ohio State” with 50 attendees. Amazon Journey featured a virtual photo exhibit with images submitted by Amazonians, opening remarks by Gil Latz, vice provost for global strategies and international affairs at Ohio State, a beekeeping presentation, a multidisciplinary panel with three professors from Ohio State and a roundtable with students from Ohio State, the University of Texas at Austin and the Federal University of Pará in Brazil and a keynote speech by Ana Rosa, founder of Meli Bees. Elena Irwin, faculty director and co-founder of the Sustainability Institute delivered the closing remarks.

A nonprofit that focuses on Brazil, Meli Bees helps communities develop regenerative practices and new livelihood opportunities. The organization was inspired by the work with and protection of the Meliponini stingless bees in traditional communities in the most endangered areas of the Amazon Rainforest. Meli Bees understands that for the health of our planet, it is urgent to protect the Amazon and partner with people and organizations who are actively taking care of the forest to understand the local context. In collaboration with a variety of partners – such as nonprofits, universities, companies and local communities – Meli Bees has co-hosted many small Amazon Journey events across the globe as part of the effort to re-signify the region previously known as the Arc of Deforestation and focus on the Arc of Regeneration being built in the Brazilian states of Maranhão and Pará.

“With the event at Ohio State, it was possible to share a little of the Amazonian reality and start dialogues to strengthen the international network to support sociobiodiversity in the region, always keeping local communities at the center of these dialogues,” Rosa said.

“The afternoon's session was fascinating. As an alumnus, it would be wonderful to have this repeated on a quarterly basis,” Roger Blocher, Moritz College of Law ‘78, said.

The Office of International Affairs, Center for Latin American Studies, Sustainability Institute, Brazilian Student Association at Ohio State and Brazil Gateway joined efforts to bring this event to campus.

Watch the event recording.